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New funding boost for secondary school expansion and improvements in Tower Hamlets

Tower Hamlets Council has secured funding worth £47 million from the Department for Education (DfE) towards the cost of building a new secondary school on the site of London Dock in Wapping. The DfE will also develop a new permanent home for a secondary free school, Canary Wharf College, on the Westferry Printworks site on the Isle of Dogs.

And, as a third part of this ‘package’, these agreements will allow the council to release funds to rebuild George Green’s School on the Isle of Dogs, subject to a feasibility study.

John Biggs, Mayor of Tower Hamlets, said: “Investing in schools means investing in the future of children and young people in our borough. I’m delighted to have agreed this funding from the Department for Education, which will mean we have enough secondary school places to meet demand.

“As well as the new school places I’m pleased at the possible rebuilding of George Green’s School, whose building is wearing out, and which will allow them to build on recent improvements and improve their offer of a great education in a great new setting.”

The total cost of building London Dock School will be £52 million, delivered by Mulberry Schools Trust, the preferred provider who currently operate Mulberry School for Girls, Mulberry Academy Shoreditch and Mulberry UTC in Tower Hamlets. Plans are ready to go, with the new school scheduled to open for the new academic year starting September 2023.

Cllr Danny Hassell, Cabinet Member for Children and Schools, said: “We believe in giving every chance for every child to get the best start in life here in Tower Hamlets. This investment into high-quality secondary school buildings will ensure our children have state-of-the-art facilities to support their learning. The plans also help to ensure we deliver much needed additional secondary places, especially in the Wapping area.”

Additional funding is coming from Section 106 and the Community Infrastructure Levy, both of which require developers to pay a contribution towards the funding of associated infrastructure such as schools, healthcare and transport.